We’ve all experienced drama at one time or another. Maybe it’s with a gossipy co-worker, an overbearing family member, or a nosy friend. But how do you know if you yourself are the one being overly dramatic? Self-awareness is key, but the problem is that most people who really struggle with this are entirely oblivious to the fact. Here are some questions to ask yourself to determine whether or not you’re a drama queen (as well as some tips to help you not let drama get the better of you):
1. Do I lash out with others when I’m not included?
In my clinical practice, I’ve often seen this manifest in relationships with in-laws. For example, a woman I worked with was upset when her mother-in-law had a fun outing with others in the family but didn’t include her. If this kind of situation happens to you, how would you handle it? Some might take extreme offense, harbor great resentment, become overly dramatic, and lash out. Others may stay silent and conceal that it was painful to be excluded. But I challenge my readers to assume positive intent and then simply ask for what you want. It’s okay to say something like, “That was probably a fun thing you all did. It hurt me a little to not be invited. I’d love to be included next time around.”
–> Avoid the drama by being direct and assertive and not lashing out or gossiping.
A lot of us may have “difficult” mothers-in-law. Here are 20 ways to help you make things a little less difficult.
1. Understand the Problem
Is there a specific reason that she is being difficult? Most people have a reason and aren’t just difficult to be difficult. Your mother-in-law might be feeling less important. You just took her baby boy! You’re now the number one woman in his life, not her and she may not be quite used to that. It’s difficult for mothers to stand back sometimes and learn to be second.
2. Take a Different Perspective
Honestly think about what it is she might be feeling right now. Perspective is how we view the world, so what happens when you try to take someone else’s perspective? Put yourself in her shoes. Your understanding might become different.
Have you ever been to a fancy restaurant and felt uncomfortable because you don’t know what to do with the vast quantity of silverware? A quick refresher on etiquette can be helpful in that situation. Similarly, these ensuing tips will help young couples (and all family members involved) in dealing with the uncertainty that comes with having in-laws. I like to call it “In-Law Etiquette.”
First of all, it is important to remember that every family is different. We are very quick to label something that is different as “weird,” or “bad.” However, just because something is different doesn’t mean that it is better or worse. It is just different! Branch out and have fun with the differences between family cultures. Also, avoid labeling your in-law’s culture as strange, stupid, or dumb. It can even be healthy to poke fun at your own family culture.
Mothers in law and daughters in law don’t always speak the same language. But, there are ways to prevent miscommunication and avoid misunderstandings. Therapist, Julie Hanks, explains what those mixed messages really mean.
Q: My in-laws hate me and the feeling is mutual. How do I handle the situation without alienating my husband or making him feel torn? We’ve been dealing with it for a couple years & it’s HARD. Any advice?